Category Archives: Teaneck Park System

Exploring Teaneck’s Phelps Park Arboretum!

Phelps Park

Phelps Park

Teaneck’s Phelps Park is a beautiful manicured 15.71 acre urban park that many consider to be one of the finest jewels in the Teaneck park system.

Phelps Park with wetlands shown near bottom right

Map of Phelps Park with wetlands highlighted near bottom

A small estimated .46 of an acre south of the Aboretum is remnant wetlands, which is most unusual to find in an urban park.  At one time a stream flowed through this area on the way to the Hackensack River.

The park boasts many fine amenities typical of urban parks such as baseball fields, basketball and tennis courts, picnic area and a swimming pool. But the feature that stands out is the 1 acre Arboretum. Phelps Park is the only park in Teaneck’s park system to feature an Arboretum.

Arboretum Area

Arboretum Area Phelps Park

This section of the park (located in the most northern section of the park near River Road) was designated an Arboretum in 2002.


Bench in Phelps Park Arboretum

It makes sense for this park to contain an arboretum. It is named after William Phelps who once owned half of Teaneck and was fond of planting trees.

The Arboretum features an estimated 150 trees. Most of the trees consist of varieties of Oak such as Red Oak, Scarlet Oak, and White Oak.  Other trees include:

Gray Birch

Gray Birch Phelps Park

Many trees have labels on them (most are placed high on the trees) with the common and scientific name of the tree.

Black Cherry

Black Cherry Phelps Park

Phelps park is heavily used by FDU students (FDU is located right across the street from the park) and local residents and is worth a look for those interested in a museum of trees.

Phelp's Park

Phelps Park

Feel free to comment below with any bird sightings, interesting plants, memories or suggestions! Thank you and have fun exploring!

Click Here for Directions!

Check out these great books on urban trees!

The Urban Tree Book

City Trees: A Historical Geography from the Renaissance through the Nineteenth Century

Urban Arboreal: A Modern Glossary of City Trees

Teaneck’s Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve!


Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve Spruced up

The Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve is located in Teaneck, New Jersey and consists of 14.9 acres of deciduous wooded wetlands and upland habitat.   The preserve is bordered by Roemer Avenue to the north and dense residential development to the east, west and south.

Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve

Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve

The 14.9 acre Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve was once called Roemer woods due to its proximity to Roemer Avenue. The preserve was targeted for single family homes construction to bring in tax ratables for Teaneck.  The construction of the homes never materialized. Four acres of woods were sold to the North Teaneck Synagogue Association which constructed a Synagogue there in 1992.

In 2009 I took a trip to the Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve. I read online that there was a trail called the Thomas Condit Instructive Nature Trail.

It took two separate trips before I finally located what appears to be the Thomas Condit nature trail. On the first attempt, I parked my car on Winthrop Road and walked to River Road up to Roemer Avenue but could not find a trail leading into the forest.

After researching online I discovered that the entrance to the trails is located off of Winthrop Road where I had parked my car. Looking at the map on the internet at home I realized I had parked too close to River Road to have seen the trail entrance. I drove back to Winthrop Road and found a sidewalk with a Thomas Condit Trail sign leading into the woods.

Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve 10.13 (12)

The Thomas Condit trail consists of a cement/boardwalk path leading from Winthrop Road to the Congregation Keter Torah. There does not appear to be any description or instructive information present on this pathway.

Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve 12.05 (15)

But that’s ok because according to the 2008 Township of Teaneck Comprehensive Plan for Recreation (this plan is no longer available online) a 1/2 mile trail is planned for the preserve. So maybe that will happen in the near future?

Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve Proposed Half Mile Nature Trail

Matthew Feldman Nature Preserve Proposed Half Mile Nature Trail (in yellow)

In the meantime let’s take a look around and see what is here.


Golden Bamboo

Here is some invasive Bamboo. In many places it is becoming against the law to plant.


Someone’s Sneaker discarded in the woods

not feeling well

A Snag in the woods. Snags are dead trees that play a valuable role in providing food (insects) to Woodpeckers and providing homes to other wildlife.